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Three Strangers (1946)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 28 January 1946 (USA)
Three strangers, each with a serious problem in their lives, share a sweepstakes ticket which they wished upon together before a Chinese idol.

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Writers:

(original screenplay), (original screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Johnny West
...
Icey Crane
...
Bertram Fallon
Marjorie Riordan ...
Janet Elliott
...
Prosecutor
Rosalind Ivan ...
Lady Rhea Belladon
...
Junior Clerk
Peter Whitney ...
Timothy Delaney aka Gabby
...
David Shackleford
Clifford Brooke ...
Senior Clerk
Doris Lloyd ...
Mrs. Proctor
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Storyline

According to a legend, if three strangers gather before an idol of Kwan Yin (the Chinese goddess of fortune and destiny) on the night of the Chinese New Year and make a common wish, Kwan Yin will open her eyes and her heart and grant the wish. In London 1938 on the Chinese New Year, Crystal Shackleford has such an idol and decides to put the legend to the test. She picks two random strangers off the street, and puts the proposition to them. They decide that an ideal wish would be for a sweepstakes ticket they buy equal shares in to be a winner. After all, everyone needs money and a pot is very easy to divide equally, right? Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

BREATHTAKING SUSPENSE - THRILLS! (original ad - all caps)


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 January 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

3 Desconhecidos  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Huston was inspired to write the story after he bought an odd statue in London. See more »

Quotes

Detective: [to Fallon] Even if I am a policeman, I hate a squealer.
See more »

Soundtracks

Waltz in A Flat Major, Op. 39
(uncredited
Music by Johannes Brahms
Played on the piano by Johnny
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Triple Threat
23 September 2004 | by (Forest Ranch, CA) – See all my reviews

THREE STRANGERS stake their future fortunes on the whims of Kwan Yin, an ancient Chinese goddess.

The original story behind this tidy little thriller was originally conceived by John Huston as a sequel to THE MALTESE FALCON (1941). That not proving possible, it was shaped into its present form with help from the writer Howard Koch and turned over to the noted director Jean Negulesco.

The film stars Sydney Greenstreet & Peter Lorre in one of their several pairings. Greenstreet, huge and implacable, plays a desperately duplicitous solicitor. Spooky-eyed Lorre, who gets to play a rare romantic role, is a petty criminal on the lam from the police. Their actual screen time together is sparse, but they make the most of it--the nervous little fellow playing perfectly off of the rumbling fat man. Greenstreet, especially, overacts magnificently, descending into melancholia and, eventually, madness, to the delight of the viewer.

Geraldine Fitzgerald is pure vixen as the third member of the trio, a woman so consumed by jealousy, and obsessed with the supposed powers of the goddess Kwan Yin, that she has ceased being influenced by natural love & affection. Every man's nightmare, she is unadulterated malice.

The supporting cast includes the sprightly Joan Lorring as Lorre's loyal girlfriend; Alan Napier as Fitzgerald's estranged husband; Rosalind Ivan as a widowed dowager still in communication with her deceased husband; Arthur Shields as a stern prosecutor; and the always competent Doris Lloyd as Lorre's slovenly landlady.

Movie mavens will recognize an unbilled Ian Wolfe as a London barrister.


9 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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